Status of Main Author



Learning, Sciences, and Technology

Document Type


Publication Date

Fall 9-7-2016


Given the need to enhance the academic language and early literacy skills of young children from low-income homes and the importance of the home literacy environment (HLE) in supporting children’s development, the purpose of this qualitative study was to better understand the HLE of low-income African-American and Latino mothers of preschool children living in the United States. Specifically, research aims were to examine HLE practices, beliefs and influential factors as well as to compare the HLE of African-American and Latino, specifically Puerto Rican, families. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 10 African-American and 10 Puerto Rican mothers. Data were analyzed using the consensual qualitative research method. Twelve themes were identified: provision of educational materials, engagement with books, focus on print, implicit language opportunities, focus on other pre-academic skills, social interactions with books, influence of school, influence of other adults, parent reading interest/ability, child reading interest, parent commitment to child’s success, and family stressors. Few differences emerged between African-American and Puerto Rican mothers. Implications for language and literacy intervention development are discussed.

Publication Title

Journal of Early Childhood Literacy